In one of my writing circles Someone said “I’m in,” after she checked in. Most of us tend to say, “I’m done.” This idea of being “in” rather than “done” took hold and now several people when finished with their check-ins say, “I’m in.”
Acknowledging that we are in demonstrates the difference between saying we are friends and being in a friendship. Being married or being in a marriage. We may have lots of friends on Facebook but only a few can claim a true friendship. In, is active, means you are engaged and showing up for yourself and others. I’m in is a commitment and acknowledgment of willing participation.
In writing you want to be all in. It’s one thing to say you’re a writer and another to be in your writing. “I’m in” shows up on the page for the reader because an engaged writer narrates better than one that is forcing some process or isn’t all in. An “I’m in” writer lets the writing take us where it will.
In life we can ask ourselves am I in?, or am I actually not here, not present, not engaged? Not really interested? There are many ways to encourage engagement and an in-ness. I use various practices in my life, relationships, and work with writers, to keep us in. I encourage an explorer’s mind. Explore our ideas on and off the page. This resonates with the approach of Beginner’s Mind described in Zen doctrine. Remain open, explore, be curious. Have your curiosity keep you in.
And, during such difficult times as these do your best to gather with others to explore ways to be in. Gather together to encourage your creative pursuits. Be in with other writers, creatives, spiritual practitioners, explorers and friends. Be in your writing, ideally every day; get your thoughts and ideas down. Create a meeting place for others. And, where ever the adversary may come up in life or on the page, this too is an opportune time to be all in. Listen. Our antagonists also have something to say.
Finally, consider joining me and other writers in a monthly writing circle starting up this fall (see below).
My Writing Circles:
Description: Each circle is a year commitment. We meet up once a month. You get my guidance, personalized writing prompts, a writing partner along with the support and energy of a writing circle. I facilitate each circle with my skillful and safe approach to holding circles. I have been facilitating writing and transformational circles for three decades. These are not critique circles. I focus on holding space for you and your writerly soul, trusting that as long as you keep writing, as long as you are “in,” your writing will excel. You are given the means to reach the heights of your writing. You can share 3 to 4 pages at each circle. You will also be given a writing partner for the year (optional but recommended). The two of you will share pages and enthusiastic effort as well. You will receive helpful guidance in the circle around your writing project and intentions. I offer two levels of participation. If you just want to attend the circle, get my consultation there, a writing partner and monthly writing prompts, it is $35.00 a month. If you want me to critique and work on 5 pages of your writing each month, the cost is $45 a month. You commit to a level for 6 months, then we check in to see if you want to switch your participation level. Either way, I am your Writing Sherpa. That means, I am here ready to answer questions you may have and to help you climb (write) to your next summit.
Dates, TIMES and PLACES (oh my!):
Madison Tuesday Night Circle, begins October 2ndand meets the FIRST TUESDAY night of each month till October, 2019. 6 to 9:00 PM., at Harmonia Psychotherapy Center, 406 N. Pinckney. Free parking made available. Room for 3 more.
Madison Morning circle begins SEPTEMBER 18th. Meets the THIRD TUESDAY MORNING each month till September, 2019. We meet the third Tuesday of the month from 10:00 till 12:30 at Harmonia Psychotherapy Center (no therapy though!) at 406 N Pinckney.
Prairie du Sac continues on October 3rdand meets up the FIRST WENDESDAY night of the month from 6 till 9:00 at 595 Water Street, Prairie du Sac. Room for 2 more.
EAU CLAIRE SATURDAY AFTERNOON circle starts on SEPTEMBER 8th and meets on the 2nd SATURDAY afternoon of each month from 12:30 till 3:30. Place TBD.
If you are interested in a more one-to-one experience I offer Sherpa-mentoring and Sherpa-coaching services. These can be via email, phone and SKYPE (or Facetime). Contact me for more information or for your free 20-minute phone consult to explore together how I might help you. firstname.lastname@example.org or 608-963-0724.
Here's a message and poem from David Whyte: Everything Is Waiting for You: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hq2NfrNt9EU . A book with this poem in it: http://www.davidwhyte.com/everything-is-waiting-for-you/
Everything Is Waiting for You by David Whyte
Your great mistake is to act the drama as if you were alone. As if life were a progressive and cunning crime with no witness to the tiny hidden transgressions. To feel abandoned is to deny the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely, even you, at times, have felt the grand array; the swelling presence, and the chorus, crowding out your solo voice. You must note the way the soap dish enables you, or the window latch grants you freedom. Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity. The stairs are your mentor of things to come, the doors have always been there to frighten you and invite you, and the tiny speaker in the phone is your dream-ladder to divinity.
Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into the conversation. The kettle is singing even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots have left their arrogant aloofness and seen the good in you at last. All the birds and creatures of the world are unutterably themselves.
Everything is waiting for you.